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01- Introduction to VB.NET

Posted by paragdongre on June 4, 2008


What is VB.NET

Visual Basic .NET is Microsoft’s Visual Basic on their .NET framework. Visual Basic is an object oriented programming language. Any programmer can develop applications quickly with Visual Basic. It is a very user-friendly language. All you have to do is arrange components using visual tools and then write code for the components. Most programmers of Visual Basic use Visual Studio for their development needs. Moving forward, Microsoft’s .NET framework is composed of preprogrammed code that users can access anytime. This preprogrammed code is referred to as the class library. The programs in the class library can be combined or modified in order to suit the needs of programmers. Programs in .NET run on the CLR or the Common Language Runtime environment. Regardless of computer, as long as this environment is present, programs developed in a .NET language will run.

Evolution of VB.NET

Before VB .NET, there was VB and before there was VB, there was BASIC. BASIC stands for Beginner’s All-purpose Symbolic Instruction Code. It was developed in 1963 by computer scientists John Kemeny and Thomas Kurtz in Dartmouth College. It was a general purpose programming language that was intended for beginners. In 1975, when the MITS Altair 8800 Microcomputer was released, BASIC became Altair BASIC, developed by the computer heavyweights Bill Gates and Paul Allen. During the eighties, when the personal computer was starting to get into everyone’s homes, the BASIC computer language started to lose its hold on the market because more and more people and corporations were using computer programs for complex tasks rather than simple and “basic” tasks. In 1991, BASIC was infused with its Visual component and became Visual Basic. The new graphical user interface was pioneered by Alan Cooper. Visual Basic was not an instant hit at first due to compatibility issues but it began getting a solid following in the mid to late nineties when developers started becoming familiar with it. In the new millennium, the Visual Basic .NET became the successor of the Visual Basic programming languages.

Pros and Cons

Pros

  1. You can develop programs faster using the VB .NET programming language. You have so many resources in the .NET Class Library to take advantage of. VB .NET has full access to the .NET framework.
  2. It is easier to program using Microsoft development environments like Visual Studio.
  3. It is easier to organize your thoughts in an object-oriented programming language like VB .NET.
  4. There are a lot of books and tutorials to improve your skills in VB .NET.
  5. The VB language itself interfaces with Microsoft applications seamlessly (VBA).

Cons

  1. Debugging is very difficult on the VB .NET programming languages especially with long codes.
  2. You’ll spend hundreds of dollars purchasing development tools from Microsoft (Retail version of Visual Studio costs around $300).

Where is VB.NET Most Useful

The VB .NET programming language is most useful for rapid application development or RAD. If you want to get your programs up and running in a jiffy then you should use VB .NET. Since VB .NET is more suitable for quick and easy programming, it is not recommended for the large, enterprise-wide software development solutions. Debugging and finding your way through long and tangling lines of VB .NET code will simply give you headaches.

Getting Your Copy of VB.Net

Now that you understand what VB .NET is all about,you should get a copy of the programming language as soon as you can. You can either get a copy of Visual Basic at your local retailer or download a freeware version at the Microsoft website. If you want to get started right away, copy the following hyperlink to your browser’s address bar to download your freeware copy of Microsoft Visual Basic 2005 Express Edition – http://msdn.microsoft.com/vstudio/express/vb/you have to be patient because the file is quite large. If you have the time and the resources then you should get the latest versions of Visual Studio or Visual Basic. Once you have your own copy of Visual Basic, you will be on your way to learning one of the most powerful programming languages to date. Good luck in learning the VB .NET programming language!

 

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One Response to “01- Introduction to VB.NET”

  1. Debugging is very difficult on the VB .NET programming languages especially with long codes.

    How come debuggin is very difficult on VB.NET? What IDE you use to debug? If you use Visual Studio, debugging is not that difficult.

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